KANHANGAD : The Union government will bring out an alternative plan to make cashew nut farming sustainable, said actor and Rajya Sabha member Suresh Gopi.
“It is not acceptable to put human lives at risk to promote cashew farming. We should explore alternative farming practices,” he said.
Suresh Gopi said he had raised the issued with Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. “I am expecting a government plan to support the farmers within a year,” he said.
Suresh Gopi was speaking after dedicating Sneha Veedu, a daycare for people with disabilities, at Ambalathara on Monday. Revenue Minister E Chandrasekharan inaugurated the facility.
He said the government’s help was not always required to realise such projects. “People can join hands and realise the project. Sneha Veedu is an example,” he said.
The actor helped to secure Rs 25 lakh from the Dubai-based Varkey Foundation as seed money for the project, initiated by Sahitya Vedi, the literary club of Nehru Arts and Science College in Kanhangad.
“This is the eighth house of the club built in association with Suresh Gopi,” said writer Ambikasuthan Mangad, the president of the club, who made an initial contribution of Rs 40,000 from the royalty of his book ‘Enmakaje’.
Kanhangad-based Kasturba Mahila Samaj donated 10 cents of land for Sneha Veedu and the foundation stone was laid in 2015. Colleges students from across the state contributed their time and money to the cause. The daycare will be the new home of 12 people with disabilities, already under the care of anti-endosulfan activists Muneesa Ambalathara and Ambalathara Kunhikrishnan. They had been running the home for the past three years in a rented house with the support of civil society, with the support of actor Kunchacko Boban and documentary maker Dr Biju.